The Lung Association applauds plain and standardized packaging regulations

OTTAWA, ON - The Lung Association is pleased with the recent announcement of the adoption of plain and standardized tobacco packaging, which will place Canada once again as a global leader in tobacco control.

“Tobacco products have been hiding behind attractive packaging, silently killing Canadians, for far too long and we are excited that this regulation will help to end this,” says Terry Dean, President and CEO, The Lung Association – National. Plain and standardized packaging aims to encumber the tobacco industry’s important remaining form of advertising and it will be vital in protecting future generations from tobacco addiction and preventable lung disease.

“Tobacco is still the number one cause of preventable disease and death in Canada and that needs to stop. Eliminating the tobacco industry’s ability to advertise and market its products through packaging is certainly a step in the right direction to prevent new generations from smoking. This is something that The Lung Association has been advocating for nearly 30 years,” Dean adds.

Tobacco currently kills more than 45,000 Canadians annually.

The new plain and standardized packaging regulations will be amongst the most comprehensive in the world.

Some of the highlights of the regulations include:

  • Applying the regulations to packaging of all tobacco products
  • Requiring cigarette packages to be in a standardized slide and shell format; this will increase the graphic warning size.
  • Eliminating brand colours, and logos on packages. All packaging will be a drab brown colour for all brands; health warnings will remain on tobacco packages
  • Banning slim and superslim cigarettes, as well as stylish “purse packs” appealing to young women and girls
  • Requiring the largest health warnings on cigarette packages in the world in terms of surface area
  • Many other detailed measures.

Canada’s announcement follows examples set by countries that have already implemented similar regulations. These are Australia, New Zealand, UK, France, Ireland, Norway, Hungary and Slovenia. 

Once the regulations are finalized, tobacco manufacturers will be allowed a transition period to change their packages.  Plain packaging is expected to be on store shelves in 2019, following a 75-day consultation period.

This recent announcement comes on the back of a new federal tobacco strategy. “These are very encouraging announcements for us and we trust that they signify a broader change in how we see commercial tobacco in Canada,” Dean adds. “We strongly believe that it is imperative to make the economic climate for the tobacco industry in Canada as unfavourable as possible.” For more information about our tobacco advocacy efforts, visit For complete list of regulations, visit Health Canada.


About The Canadian Lung Association

The Lung Association is the leading organization in Canada working to promote lung health and prevent and manage lung disease. We do this by funding vital research, pushing for improved treatments, smarter policies, or supporting patients in managing their health. For more information, visit


Media contact:

Marketa Stastna

Manager, Communications and Marketing

The Lung Association - National

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Page Last Updated: 22/06/2018